Peggy, Padraig and Soda Bread
While Gorsky is clearly not an Irish name, it's not the one I was born with. I, Katie Naughton, am of 100% Irish lineage. While just further back on my maternal grandparent's side, my paternal Grandparents were both "off the boat" as they say...
My grandmother, (who was not old enough to be a grandmother when I, the oldest of 5 grandchildren entered the world and therefore "Mom Peggy,") arrived in this country at age 18. She was a force of nature. The epitome of work ethic and service to others. It wasn't until just after she passed I ever thought of her as tough and a dear friend texted me "she was tough but grand"...like, I knew I wasn't getting away with anything ever and to not question her authority...but I guess I never put an adjective on it I was too busy doing what I was told:-) For many years she and my grandfather ran their Naughton's Grocery Superette on 242nd street across from Van Cortland Park, Visitation Parish, Bronx, NY. After my grandfather's premature death, she continued to run the store and raise four children. Once she sold the store, she certainly did not stop working, at the time of her death we're pretty sure she was single-handedly running Visitation Parish. Make your own conclusions, but the parish has since closed. Hand to God.
One legacy of Ma Peg, is her Irish Soda Bread. She would "tell you" the recipe....but the details may have changed every time....twas more important to watch and not listen:) For The St Anne's Guild Bake Sale at Visitation, which was a Naughton enterprise in an of itself between Ma Peg, Aunt Mary (you've had her Oatmeal Scotchies, Bailey's Irish Pound Cake) and often I would bake and trek down with a carload as well. The first thing to sell out was always Ma Peg's soda bread, she would have to save one for Monsignor under the table.
When served in her apartment it was always with Breakstone's Whipped Butter, room temp.
In honor of St. Patrick's day, Mom Peg's Irish Sode Bread is in store and in bundles this week. Now before we go any further I need to give the Mary Naughton March Public Service Announcement. Patrick is the English version of the Irish Padraig. Patty is a woman's name. If you must abbreviate St Patrick's Day, Paddy is the proper and authentic way to do so.
Also, because I love you and you need the proper experience, there will be a container of Whipped Butter shipped with every Soda Bread.
- Katie Gorsky